Sandhill cranes in flight. (Photo: Donna Bourdon)

Sandhill Crane Festival 
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency will be hosting the 2018 Tennessee Sandhill Crane Festival in Birchwood this weekend. The festival is held yearly at the Hiwassee Refuge, located at the confluence of the Tennessee and Hiwassee rivers, and at the nearby Birchwood Community Center. The area will be buzzing with birds and birdwatchers alike. Although the sandhill crane is the star of the event, many types of waterfowl, bald eagles, golden eagles, white pelicans and perhaps even whooping cranes are likely to be spotted. Sandhill cranes are the most numerous and wide-ranging of all worldwide crane species, with a population exceeding 600,000. Click here for more information.

When: Saturday, Jan. 13 and Sunday, Jan. 14., 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: 5623 TN-60, Birchwood
How much: Free

Winter in the West Village
Did you miss an opportunity to explore Downtown Chattanooga’s West Village on New Year’s Eve? Well, fear not. Organizers have announced a weekly gathering on Saturday nights at the bustling Westin Chattanooga. The free event includes local food and entertainment from 6 to 8 p.m. Guests will also enjoy a “laser light” show. The light show begins at 8 p.m. and each week will offer different guests and food vendors. The first performer will be Ryan Oyer Band. Click here for more information.

When: Saturday, Jan. 13., 6-8 p.m.
Where: 801 Pine St.
How much: Free

An Evening with Tinsley Ellis at Songbirds
Legendary guitarist Tinsley Ellis will perform an intimate set at Songbirds Guitar Museum on Saturday night. The Georgia-based artist will celebrate the release of his new album “Winning Hand.” Fans of Ellis will recognize his many influences, including BB King, Howlin’ Wolf and Billy Preston. He has shared the stage with Warren Haynes, Widespread Panic, Otis Rush, Willie Dixon and Buddy Guy. Ellis’ latest project includes performances of Grateful Dead blues and R&B songs. Tickets are available for $25. Click here for more information.

When: Saturday, Jan. 13., 7 p.m.
Where: 35 Station St.
How much: $25

Christmas tree bonfire
An annual party centered around an enormous bonfire returns this weekend. The event offers an opportunity to “watch a conflagration of past Christmas celebrations and the remnants of the old year turn to ashes” surrounded by friends. Christmas trees can be dropped off anytime before the event. Last year, more than 60 trees were burned and already 70 trees have been donated for this year’s fire. The bonfire was originally scheduled to take place on Friday night, but Treetop Hideaway officials moved the event to Saturday night due to pending weather. Click here for more information.

When: Saturday, Jan. 13., 6-11 p.m.
Where: 576 Chattanooga Valley Road
How much: Free

The Chattery: Storytelling open-mic
The Chattery will host their second open-mic storytelling night on Sunday evening. The theme of the night is “firsts.” Storytellers should tell five-minute tales based on first loves, first time doing an activity or anything else they can think of involving the theme. Anybody can sign up to participate. The rules for stories are that they must be true, “from the heart” and five minutes or less in length. The open-mic will be at Improv Chattanooga.

When: Sunday, Jan. 14., 5-6:30 p.m.
Where: 1800 Rossville Ave., #Suite 106
How much: $7-$10